Thursday, October 6, 2022

Lafayette Supervisors Approve New Poll Books to Speed Up Voting

By Alyssa Schnugg

News editor

In an effort to make voting a quicker process for Lafayette County residents, the Lafayette County Board of Supervisors approved purchasing 55 new updated poll books.

In 2020, many of Lafayette County precincts had long lines with some voters waiting more than an hour to cast their ballots.

Lafayette County Circuit Court Clerk Jeff Busby said he was tasked with looking into ways that could help reduce the amount of time people are standing in lines on election day.

He contacted Bill Lowe, with Election Systems & Software to see what bigger counties and cities are doing to reduce their election day lines.

The answer was to update poll books that now have software that allows a voter to present their photo ID at the poll that is run through a scanner. The voter’s information is found quickly and the voter can be checked in faster than the current electronic poll books allow.

“It would definitely speed up our process,” Busby said.

Lowe spoke to the Board of Supervisors to explain the process of the new poll books.

“It is more proficient than the poll books you have now,” Lowe said. “It’s a lot more user-friendly for your poll workers.”

The scanner will use the ID presented to check in the voter; however, if there is a problem where the scanner isn’t working, the poll worker can still type in a name.

The 55 new poll books will cost about $70,000 that was already budgeted for new poll books a few years ago.

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